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Americans Face Hard Times. 11-2 and 11-3 Notes. Causes of the 1929 Crash. Economic Factors. Financial Factors. Poor distribution of wealth Consumers relied on credit Consumer spending dropped Industry struggled. Stock markets rise in 1920s Speculation in stock increases Margin buying

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Americans Face Hard Times

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Americans face hard times

Americans Face Hard Times

11-2 and 11-3 Notes

Causes of the 1929 crash

Causes of the 1929 Crash

Economic Factors

Financial Factors

  • Poor distribution of wealth

  • Consumers relied on credit

  • Consumer spending dropped

  • Industry struggled

  • Stock markets rise in 1920s

  • Speculation in stock increases

  • Margin buying

  • Stock prices rise to unrealistic levels

Key terms

Key Terms:

  • Hobos – jobless, homeless wanderers

  • Great Depression – most severe economic downturn in the history of the U.S.

  • Foreclosure – when a bank or other lender takes over ownership of a property from an owner who has failed to make loan payments.

Hoovervilles and hobos

Hoovervilles and Hobos

  • In the early 1930s, no federal government provided food or money to the poor

  • Hoovervilles are established as a result

  • Hobos often jumped trains traveling from town to town looking for work or a place to live.

  • Hobos had dangerous lifestyle – develop sign language to determine if a town was a safe place for them

Key terms continued

Key Terms Continued

  • Hoovervilles – sprawling neighborhoods of shacks sprang up on the outskirts of towns and public parks. – blamed this on president Hoover

Bank failures

Bank Failures

  • Many had entrusted their savings to banks.

  • How has that changed today?

    • Insurance from the federal government protects most people’s deposits

    • Laws require that a bank keep a greater percentage of assets in cash to be paid out by depositors

  • 1930 – almost 350 banks closed due to runs.

Key terms continued1

Key Terms Continued:

  • Drought – a period of below-average rainfall, this lasted several years during the 1930s

  • Dust Bowl – Oklahoma, Kansas, Colorado, New Mexico, and Texas became known as this due to large wind storms and dry dusty conditions

Dust bowl

Dust Bowl

  • Caused many deaths due to inhalation of dust.

  • Destroyed crops and buried farm equipment

  • The storms stripped off the topsoil and blew it away

Farm failures

Farm Failures

  • Faced hard times in 1920s – got worse in the 1930s

  • Farmers produced more than they could sell and price dropped drastically------------- INFLATION

    • How does this effect farmers income?

  • Many suffered foreclosure



  • 1933 – GNP dropped 40%

  • Unemployment reached a high of 25% (50% in some areas such as Harlem)

Writers and musicians

Writers and Musicians

  • Woody Guthrie – songs about the dust bowl describe the disaster’s effect on the people

  • John Steinbeck – wrote several books describing life during the depression and dust bowl – often very tragic endings

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